Mortal Kombat 11 – Review
Follow Genre: Fighter
Developer: NetherRealm Studios, QLOC, Shiver
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive
Platform: PS4, PC, Switch, Xbox One
Tested on: PS4

Mortal Kombat 11 – Review

Site Score
Good: Many options, tight controls, very nice graphics
Bad: (voice) acting sometimes a bit off, Krypt mode still not much despite playability
User Score
(4 votes)
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Rating: 6.8/10 (4 votes cast)

The king of fighters is back! Yes, it got competition from many games, including its resembling brother game Injustice, and other older series like Tekken or Street Fighter. But no fighting game ever got so much crap over it for its overabundance of violence and gore and yet is still here. It adapted, it improvised, it overcame, and at the same time, it’s still the brutal Mortal Kombat it has always been.  


Largely continuing where the previous Mortal Kombats left off, the champions of Earthrealm try to sabotage the Netherrealm, where fallen champions such as Liu Kang and Kung Lao are looking a bit pale as they were killed and corrupted by the dark side, only to rise again as champions of evil. Before long, a new character named Kronika is introduced, who seems to not only be very powerful but who has a personal mysterious agenda as well. Kronika is able to mess around with time, and within seconds there seems to be a rift in time, mixing timelines from Mortal Kombat that makes characters meet alternate versions of friends, foes and.. themselves.

It’s easy to forget that you are playing a game when playing the story mode. Every fight is linked together by (long) cinematics that really feels like you are watching a movie. Before you know it, there’s suddenly a screen that says ”fight”, as you will hastily pick up up your controller again when you were just enjoying the cinematics. Noteworthy: During the story mode, the fatalities that are giving Mortal Kombat its recognizable features are not available, probably to make the cinematics more logical. It’s not really a bother, and maybe takes away some of the stress of punching in the right buttons as the story is a big part of the game and is comparable to previous parts of the series or to the Injustice series. It’s all done very well, and it makes sure you won’t get bored.


Mortal Kombat 11, like most of the later Mortal Kombats, is a true visual spectacle. First of all, there are movies from the Story Mode that look very life-like when it comes to the (motion-captured) movements of every character. The same actually goes for the fighting itself. It’s a weird yet nice combination of realism and fantasy with an obvious amount of gore and options to start short cinematics during fights as well. Not to forget the detailed environments and that every character has its own unique set of moves and skills that somehow still connects to every other interaction. Mortal Kombat is one of those series that keeps improving itself in many ways and the 11th game is no exception. It’s done exceptionally well overall, and the graphics are giving you, and those watching the game, enough reason to play for a while.


Like the gore when looking at graphical achievements of Mortal Kombat, the sound design enhances this bit. With over-the-top sound effects of squishy wounds that are being inflicted or bones that are cracking, the game knows how to make you feel good about the impact you have on some opponent’s body and equally bad about you being hit. Then there are the characters voices that are voiced pretty well but sometimes slightly unbelievable in certain situations (not enough anger or passion or other emotions). There’s also cinematic background music throughout the entire game, whether you are watching the story unfold or while you are playing in an arena that has a background track, often even fitting the environment.


There’s something about a classic fighter game like Mortal Kombat that relatively makes you expect it’s something good. Okay, there are franchises who completely screwed up their good name (looking at you, Sonic) but once they seem to be on the right track there is more reason to be confident that the next game will also do well, right? Mortal Kombat is one of those games. When looking at the gameplay we actually have to review two different parts. One part is the different game modes and what they bring to the table, the other is, obviously, the fighting itself and how it worked out. Let’s start with naming the different things that are available to you once you got MK11 in your possession.

For solo players, Mortal Kombat starts off strong with a Story Mode and a ”Klassik” Mode which resembles the classic towers where you fight through multiple opponents to get a bit of background story about the character you’ve chosen to play with and their dreams of power. It’s a bit of an addition to the Story Mode, allowing slight changes in the ending of the original story by replacing the final fight with your chosen character versus a slightly different programmed boss. These modes can be as difficult as you want them to be, making them accessible to all players. The mode that cannot be adjusted on demand is Towers of Time. Towers of Time presents, much alike Injustice 2, challenges that are based on the Klassik Mode but have different handicaps or enhancements on them, challenging the player to finish certain objectives where the floor might be hazardous and damages you over time, rockets come flying at your face or other similar things. Each tower is set for a certain time before it disappears

There’s also an Online Mode, a Local and Tournament Mode for local multiplayer, and even an interesting ”AI” Mode. In AI Mode, you basically do something like fantasy football. You create a team of three characters and divide points on what you want their focus to be. Do you want Barakka to be more of a grappler? Do you want Scorpion to be more offensive or combo-based? Once you set up your fantasy trio, you see how they would fight three other characters from a different player that are set up. It can be relaxing to just watch the visuals unfold as you lay back. No matter the mode you play, you will earn some rewards. Rewards are either coins, souls, hearts or crystals. Coins, souls, and hearts are used in the Krypt where the crystals are used to instantly unlock premium content from the shop (and you can also buy crystals with money).

The Krypt is a place where you can freely unlock new content such as skins and brutalities with your earned currencies. The last few games it got different forms. Where you previously just had to click a grave and a reward would appear, this time you are running around with a generic fighter to do some type of puzzling adventure on an island. But to be honest, it feels more as a nuisance than a cool addition. It’s very tame compared to the action-heavy fights, it’s a big island where all you do is open chests if you have enough money earned, and the amount you would need to unlock everything really requires a crazy amount of playtime. It’s nice that there is so much to collect, especially since you can customize characters with gear and boosted abilities to make your favorites even more fun, but the Krypt just seems to lack something other than just running around.

Luckily, the fighting itself in all its glory is on point and very difficult to master, even with the topnotch tutorials that MK11 is providing. Maybe if you would stick around to one character you will manage to gain more control, but even then you will have to know your opponent well. Each character has such a unique style and skill-set that, when you suddenly play with a different one, you will have to readjust to, to figure out what the skills are and are triggered by which input. The regular front and back punch and kick stay the same on your four main buttons, and some skills like an uppercut or grapple as well, but the special, unique skills are often two directions combined with one of four buttons and might take some time to properly get into your system. Besides that, there are environmental interactions possible that allow you to throw things at your enemy, skewer them, let traps fall and more. When at 30% HP or less, you can also trigger a special attack called ”Fatal Blow” that, when not blocked or avoided, does massive damage and can really be a gamechanger. It can only be used once when connecting each match though, so save it wisely. You even have two attack and defensive enhancers that charge over time that allow you to mix fights up a little with unexpected behavior. A lot of the time, all these things combined have some in-game visuals as well, not to even mention the brutal fatalities, the trademark for Mortal Kombat. It’s all worked out very well, and won’t quickly feel unfair. It’s fun to play, easily accessible, and hard to master, giving you a long road of replayability and mastery.


Mortal Kombat 11 really does an insanely amount of good. Maybe it’s not always acted well or logical, but it has a nice, highly cinematic story with beautiful visuals that are carried on in-game as well. It’s brutal, it’s over-the-top, it’s Mortal Kombat. The gameplay feels fair and elaborate enough to amuse you for hours, with options aplenty to obliterate those who stand in your way. Only the Krypt is somewhat disappointing but other than that it’s one of the top fighters out there.

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Mortal Kombat 11 - Review, 6.8 out of 10 based on 4 ratings
Pim Hoogeveen

Find me on youtube to see some playthroughs!

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